The United States Department of the Interior, Park Service, has declared Jessee's Mill in Russell County, Virginia to be a national historic landmark. Prior to this designation the mill was declared a state historical landmark by the Commonwealth of Virginia, Department of Historic Resources.
Jessee's Mill began operation over two hundred years ago, predating the census and tax records of 1790. The mill was the primary source for ground agricultural products and other trading in the Mill Creek Area. The mill is located on Jessee's Mill Road, State Route 645, north of Route 71, between Lebanon and Cleveland.
John Jessee, a first war of independence infantryman and musician, purchased the mill from William Gilmore in 1794. The mill continued mechanical improvement over the years and around 1890 was made into the three story structure which stands today. All of the milling machineries are still in the mill. The mill ceased operations in 1932 during the Great Depression.
The mill property is currently owned by Mr. Sherman Wallace of Cleveland. The application was submitted by Joseph Jessee of Lebanon, in cooperation with Mr. Wallace, and Jim Jessee of Chico, California.
An historical marker for Jessee's Mill and John Jessee is located on Route 71 about three miles from Lebanon.
The state designation was granted in December of 2004 and the federal designation was granted in January of 2005.
Lebanon, Virginia 24266-0001
John Jessee, Sr is listed in the DAR Patriot Index as having served in Caswell Co., NC as a musician (see note) in Yarborough’s Company and as a soldier in the 10th Regiment from April 1781 to April 22, 1782 during the Revolutionary War. Eighteen members of the Tabitha Adams Russell Chapter, NSDAR (six of which were organizing charter members) list him as their patriot. Most of these are JHF members, also. Note: It is believed that he was a “Coronet”, (rather than a musician playing the coronet, an instrument that didn’t exist at that time) which was a military rank of that era and was later dropped and replaced with the rank of 2nd Lieutenant.
As a tribute to our patriot a military headstone has been procured by the JHF and will be placed in the Andrew Jackson Jessee Cemetery on Jessee’s Mill Road, Cleveland, VA. A memorial marker indicating John and Frankey Lea’s burial location will be placed along side. The Andrew Jackson Jessee, (grandson of John, Sr.) Cemetery is located behind the Mill Creek Church. A special dedication ceremony is planned for Friday, June, 16th at 2 p.m.
For more information please contact:
J.C. Jessee, 276-889-1763 or
Vernon Salyers 276-889-0055, email@example.com
Jessee's Mill Restoration Proposed as part of a Mill Creek Historic Park
As some may know, this editor and several other JHF members hope that an appropriate organization will work with the State to designate or acquire Jessee's Mill along with the Dam above and the Jessee School, Store, Church, and millers' home for a Jessee's Mill or Mill Creek Historic Community Park We had hoped that we could acquire enough land around it to preserve a sense of the original environs. There may be an opportunity to purchase the Andrew Jackson Jessee home across from Jessee's Mill and Sherman Wallace, who owns Jessee's Mill is willing to work with the community to see it preserved.. This is a wonderful opportunity to preserve four significant historical landmarks and perhaps create a small historical park around it for Russell Co. and all its sons and daughters across America.
I am back from Virginia, and haven't begun to organize myself, but managed to spend the afternoon putting all the pictures of the Jessee Mill and Jessee School on my website. There is the main page, with a link to a page that has a map and directions, and another link to a page where there are 18 thumbnails. Each thumbnail is linked to a page with its larger cousin. The pages load faster this way. I hope you all enjoy them, especially those of you who may never get to the area to see it in person. I'm not the best photographer, but enjoy anyway! You get the idea. It may even help to see these, as it pertains to the restoration people are talking about on the Jessee List. http://omega84.com/jesseemill1.htm
Sue Lester Patterson [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Thanks to Tom Rudder, here is a site, TopoZone.Com, where you can view USGS topographic maps including Russell Co., Virginia. Dozens of Jessee cemeteries and other landmarks are well noted. This is a fantastic topographic map resource. Have fun playing on this site. I suggest you start with this specific topographic map locating Jessee's Mill, and then traverse up and down County Road 645 for a tour of Reeds Valley and the Jessee Family ancestral lands.
Tom has also delineated the original John Jessee Land and subsequent acquistions by sons Archer and George Lea Jessee as well as summarized all John Jessee land records in Caswell Co., NC and Russell Co., VA, below.
Compiled by Tom Rudder 2003
1777 On tax list for Richmond District
1779 John Jessee received land grant for 450 acres from the state of North Carolina. For 50 shillings per 100 acres. Deed Book A, page 496
1783 John Jessee sold 450 acres to John Hodge. Deed Book B, page 31.
1783 George Lea received power of Atty. from Isaac Brown to sign deed for 550 acres to John Jessee as soon as Isaac Brown can get deed from the state of N.C.
1784 John Jessee on tax list of St. Lawerence District. 631 acres.
1785 The purchase of 526 acres bought by John Jessee from Isaac Brown in 1783 was recorded. Deed BookC, page 106
1787 John Jessee sold 277 acres to Barnett Lea. Deed Book E, page 200.
1787 John Jessee sold 75 acres to Wm. Warren. Deed Book E, page 208.
1787 John Jessee sold 276 acres to Wm. Warren. Deed Book E, page 209.
1788 John Jessee on Wm. Webb Land Tax List. 200 acres Upper District 1788 John Jessee on Wm. Webb Persenal Tax List. Upper District
1789 John Jessee on Wm. Webb Personal Tax List. Upper District.
1790 John Jessee on John Weirs Land Tax List. (Assignee of Price, 200 a.)
1791 John Jessee bought 200 acres on Cedar Creek from Thomas Price. Deed Book 1, page 133.
1794 John Jessee bought 50 acres on Carrs Creek from William Gilmore. Deed Book 1, page 302.
1794 John Jessee bought 200 acres on Carrs Creek from William Gilmore. Deed Book 1, page 304.
1796 John and Frances Jessee sold 100 acres on Cedar Greek to George Fullar. Deed Book 2, page 164.
1798 John and Frances Jessee sold 100 acres on Cedar Creek to Wilson Vermillion. Deed Book 2, page 483.
1821 Prior to his death John Jessee was in the process of selling 50 acres to his son William. However the 50 acres were sold to Archer Jessee with the concurrence of the Jessee heirs. Deed Book 6, page 409.
1828 Archer Jessee bought 118 acres from the heirs of the John Jessee Sr. estate. Deed Book 8, page 87.
1828 George L. Jessee bought 82 acres from the heirs of the John Jessee estate. Deed Book 8, page 90.
Pauline Salyers and Jackquetta Fletcher provided, 5/26/2002, this report regarding the establishment of a Charter Russell Co., Virginia-- Daughter of the American Revolution Chapter.
The Organizational Celebration of the Tabitha Adams Russell Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution was held at the Old Russell County Courthouse in Dickensonville, Virginia on May 12, 2002.
Jackquetta Fletcher, Organizing Regent, welcomed everyone to the celebration. The invocation was given by Mrs. Mildred Davis, Chaplain. Troop 408 of the Boy Scouts of American presented the Colors. Jean Carr, Vice Regent, led the Pledge of Allegiance and Janice Snead, Registrar, led the reading of the Americas Creed. Everyone was asked to join in the singing of the National Anthem led by Miss Marsha Rasnake, Miss Sophie Chafin and Miss Fawn Price.
Honored guests recognized were: DAR members from Blacks Fort, Maiden Springs, and Levisa River Chapters. Erin Belcher the recipient of the DAR Good Citizen Award from Honaker High School, Mr. Mike Bush, Commonwealth Attorney, Mr. Randy Williams, Commissioner of the Revenue, Hope Dickenson, Nancy Dickenson, Attorney at Law and Geneva Mullins, President of the Russell County Historical Society.
Later in the program they were given the opportunity to address the group. Mrs. Betty Byrd St. Clair, District Director and member of the Maiden Springs Chapter, told the history of the DAR which was founded on October 11, 1880 and now has a membership of 786,000. She also spoke about the DAR motto, God, Home, and Country and congratulated the founders of the Tabitha Adams Russell Chapter, Jackquetta Fletcher, Jean Carr and Janice Snead.
Mr. Fred T. Thrasher, past president of the General William Campbell Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution, spoke and shared photographs of historical places he has visited.
Mrs. Kitty Henninger, a member of Blacks Fort Chapter, performed the installation of the organizing charter members of theTabitha Adams Russell Chapter. Members are as follows Shelia McCroskey Boyd, Jean Martin Carr, Lora Carr Chafin, Jean Meadows Cox, Mildred Patrick Davis, Nancy Salyers Elswick, Jackquetta Ratliff Fletcher, Gail Dorton Gilmer, Patricia Dickenson Gray, Carole Meadows Griffith, Linda Campbell Harris, Norma Faye Hite, Mary Sue Cox Johnson, Joy Ann Jessee Malone, Josephine Boyd Osborne, Addrienne Adams Robinson, Pauline Patrick Salyers, Janice Madeline Snead, and Shirley Patrick Stapleton. Mrs. Eugenia Phillips, Regent of Blacks Fort Chapter performed the installation of the following chapter officers: Jackquetta Ratliff Fletcher-Organizing Chapter Regent, Jean Martin Carr-Vice Regent, Josephine Boyd Osborne-Recording Secretary, Patricia E. Dickenson Gray-Corresponding Secretary, Pauline Patrick Salyers-Treasurer, Janice Madeline Snead-Registrar, Norma Faye Hite-Historian, Shelia McCroskey Boyd-Librarian and Mildred Patrick Davis-Chaplain.
As the Colors were retired everyone joined in singing God Bless America. Following the program everyone was invited to the reception which was held in the Old Russell County Courthouse.
Several members traveled to the burial site of Tabitha Adams Russell and placed a wreath on her grave. Our chapter has been named Tabitha Adams Russell in her memory.
The Tabitha Adams Russell Chapter of the DAR would like to extend an invitation for membership to any woman who is no less than eighteen years of age and can prove lineal, bloodline descent from an ancestor who aided in achieving American independence. She must provide documentation for each statement of birth, marriage and death.
If you are interested in becoming a member of this chapter please contact Jackquetta Fletcher Ph 276-889-2515 or Jean Carr Ph 276-889-3563.
Pauline later noted that six of the 19 organizing members as well as five (pending NSDAR certification) others are all descendants of the patriot, John Jessee. And I am sure others will follow. Pretty good representation for the Jessee Family, wouldnt you agree? [I do indeed, agree!]
Charter Russell County DAR Members in photo:1st row - Jackuetta Fletcher, Jean Carr, Janice Snead 2nd row - Pauline Salyers, Jo Osborne, Mildred Davis, Lora Carr, Joy Malone, Gail Gilmer 3rd row - Shirley Stapleton, Adrienne Robinson, Pat Gray, Linda Harris, Helen Ray (pending), Nancy Elswick
Saturday, June 17, 2006
10am to 4pm at the Harry L. Coomes Recreation Center & Park Grounds, Abingdon,VA.
Meet Jessee family from all over the country, enjoy family arts, crafts, and entertainment. Please join us.